Monitoring and improving product reliability is a main concern in multi-stage manufacturing processes. The reduction of human labour in manufacturing plants coupled with shorter time to market is putting much pressure on some of the manual and tedious processes to generate timely and accurate test data. Specifically, for reliability testing, there is a need to subject the Device Under Test (DUT) to repetitive stresses over long periods of time. The unforeseeable change of material characteristics at different test stages or even pre-matured failures makes human monitoring and intervention a requirement. This repetitive nature of testing makes on-site human supervision ad nauseam. As a result, inaccurate data are often collected leading to skewed conclusions made in failure analyses.
In view of the situation, there is a need for reliability testing process to take on a new approach in terms of monitoring and intervention. The Integrated Sensor Gateway for Digitisation (ISGD), coupled with a variety of customizable sensors and actuators, brings the advantages of Industry 4.0 manufacturing techniques to an industry application like product reliability testing.
The ISGD, is versatile and utilizes various wired or wireless protocols for easy integration to existing industrial equipment. Detailed monitoring and data collection is also possible with the high performance micro-processors supporting the numerous sensors and actuators integrated.
Now through a real-time contextualized dashboard, users of ISGD can gain minute control over the test system. Together with an optional Analytics platform, new trends of product behaviour can be discovered on top of regular test objectives.
The main components in the system include:
· DUT (Device Under Test)
· Test Rig: Mechanical Rig to simulate test action
· Controller: Controls the test rig
· Sensor/Actuators: Monitor the DUT status
· IoT Gateway: Communicate between IoT device, cloud, PC/tablet/Mobile
· Cloud: Storage/Analysis of test data
· PC/Tablet/Mobile: Control Dashboard
1. Interoperability: uses common protocols to integrate sensors, machines with physical and remote controls (eg Modbus TCP).
2. Information Transparency: real-time contextualized information through remote monitoring dashboard.
3. Decentralised Decision Making: both real-time and configurable machine function based on feedback data received.
4. Technology Assistance: simplifies decision making through Analytics platform.
ISGD supports Industry 4.0 Testing through equipment which allows data acquisition to remotely monitor and make analysis in the areas of:
1. Ingress Protection (IP) Testing (both liquid and solids)
2. Mechanical Stress Testing (like functional load, pummelling)
3. Thermal and Simulated Climate Testing
4. Various other customised product testing
The ISGD test system provides:
1. Testing procedures that reacts to behaviours of tested products.
2. Configurable testing processes.
3. Reduced development time with equipment that allows data acquisition.
4. Optionally available data analysis engine.